Social media has taken over our daily lives to an extent that we may not even realise it. We can assure you that you’ll often just be browsing through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and many other apps. It seems that every time we’ve a free moment, we turn to these apps. This isn’t to say that social media is completely bad. After all, they’re perfect for staying in touch with friends, keeping up with pop culture, and staying “woke.” The problem isn’t the apps themselves, but the time we spend using them. Luckily, we’ve a few tips for you that can help you reduce your screen time. Take a look.
The first step to making adjustments is to identify your starting point. Look at the stats on your phone when it records your screen time and quantify what they say. For example, if you spent two hours and thirty minutes on your phone on Monday, did you spend the majority of that time browsing Instagram on your lunch break or snapchatting throughout the day? What could you’ve done with those two hours and thirty minutes instead that would have made you even happier or more fulfilled?
Figure out which apps you use the most, when and why you use them, and how you can break the habit. If you’re a goal-oriented person, you can set a time goal for screen or social media use based on how much time you currently spend using them. For example, cutting down to two hours and 30 minutes by next week is a more manageable first step than a goal of 30 minutes of screen time. Small steps are key to building good habits, and recognizing where you’re right now is an important prerequisite to taking them.
Many of us get up and immediately scroll through Facebook as if it were the morning paper, while others stay in bed longer than necessary to catch up on the TikToks we missed while we slept. Not only does looking at social media in the morning set the tone for the day by focusing on what other people are doing in their lives (rather than what you’re doing in your life), but it can also be a complete waste of time.
It’s much better to wait to check social media until the day has already started, whether it’s at a specific time (like 10 a.m.) or 50 minutes after you wake up. You can also set a general limit on the amount of time you spend on your phone. Try not to access your phone until you’ve made yourself a cup of coffee, journaled about your appreciation, and done a skin care routine (not doable, but it sounds good, right?).
Keeping your kitchen table tech-free can help you create a cell phone-free zone in your home. This way, you can make sure you’re always on top of things during meals. If you’re going out with friends, you can also convince everyone to put their phones in the middle of the table, and the first person to pick up their phone has to pay the bill or order the next round of drinks. Sure, it may be annoying to enforce the restrictions your parents set when you were 12 and got your first phone. But honestly, you’ll have better conversations, longer meals, and a lot more fun as a result, even if you’re grumpy and complain from time to time! Spending less time on social media is just a pleasant side effect.